Vancouver was never on the cards for this epic trip of mine. Cuz a country the size of Canada, the second largest country in the world, needs more than just two days to explore. Anyway given I had a friend who had recently moved recently to this city, when I mentioned about my plans, suggested I drop by to Van City so we could hang out for a few days. Thus I tweaked my itinerary and booked myself on the plane to my first ever Canadian visit.

Just about a few weeks into the trip I learnt that I’d be by myself on arrival as my friend had to be out of the country for “various” reasons. Ah well what better way to start off my epic solo trip exploring a city by myself than being “shown” around. And to be honest most people who live in a certain city wouldn’t have explored the city themselves much, cuz its one of those conundrums. When we have something around us we tend to value it very little, take it for granted and go looking for something that we don’t have, isn’t it?

Well I arrived into Vancouver in the heart of its winter season. In fact I arrived on the shortest day of the year when the sunshine lasted only a handful of hours. At 9am it was so gloomy, dark, cloudy and cold that it felt like I came straight into a Wellington winter morning. Specially after having had the layover in Honolulu where the temperature was around 30 deg C, VanCity felt like walking on ice straight after getting out of the sauna. Nevertheless the first place I went into after getting out the airport metro was to BestBuy to find an Apple keyboard so I could type easily on the go.

The next day however was a stunner. It felt like the weather gods had heard me complain the previous day and decided to be nicer to me. It was a perfect blue bird day allowing me to make the most of the 24hr bike rental. I decided to spend the whole day out of the city at Stanley Park and boy what a decision that turned out to be. The entire park was a city of its own and a photographers delight. Having the bike with me was quite handy although each ride couldn’t last more than 30mins cuz of the way it is setup, finding a parking station was never a problem. At the park itself I crossed off everything that was recommended on TripAdvisor from Siwash Rock to Totem apples to Brockton Point Lighthouse and of course the famous Lions Gate Bridge. From there on I had to return my bike as the 24hr period had lapsed and then had to make my way to the hotel by foot, a good 4-5kms away. En route I crossed many more amazing spots of Vancouver downtown and finally ended the day quite relaxed but excited about meeting a friend in Seattle the next day, after nearly 25 years. And thus Vancity gave me an experience I could cherish for life.

Photos at these links below: